How many times have you heard that "breakfast is the most important meal of the day"? I know that this wisdom was lost on the 18-year-old me that regularly had M&M's and a Diet Coke for breakfast. In the 20+ years since, I've come to realize that breakfast is, indeed, important.

The American Dietetic Association found that children who eat breakfast have better concentration, problem solving skills, and hand-eye coordination. As a result they are more alert, creative and less likely to miss school. Don't worry if you don't have a lot of time in the a.m. Breakfast doesn't have to take hours. Read on for 20 breakfast ideas for busy families.

1. Green smoothies —  Imagine how great you'll feel after having 4-6 servings of fruits and vegetables!

2. Fruit smoothies — Hesitant about going green? Start with fruit smoothies!

3. Whole wheat English muffins smeared with almond butter and topped with a sliced banana

4. Homemade trail mix — Simply toss dried fruit, raw almonds, and mini-carob chips in a bowl.

5. Greek yogurt — A super source of protein.

6. Toaster waffles — My salvation on hectic days. Choose whole grain.

7. Sliced apples with peanut butter

8. Leftovers! — Pull whatever is left from last night's dinner and enjoy it all over again.

9. Crockpot oatmeal — Start cooking it the night before, and wake up to a delicious meal!

10. English muffin sandwiches — Egg, English muffin, and cheese.

11. Homemade granola bars

12. Crudités and string cheese — Super easy to eat on the go!

13. Breakfast burrito — Stuff a whole wheat tortilla with scrambled eggs and cheese.

14. Cereal and milk — An oldie, but a goodie.

15. Whole wheat bagel topped with spinach and egg

16. Fruit salad — Just mix bite sized pieces of seasonal fruits in a bowl.

17. Sweet bread with almond or peanut butter — Hawaiian bread or Portuguese sweet bread is amazing when lightly toasted.

18. Sweet potato hash — Toss shredded sweet potatoes and diced ham in olive oil, and sauté until soft.

19. Nuts and berries — Fill a container with seasonal berries and your favorite nuts.

20. Microwave omelets — Toss your ingredients in a low bowl and microwave for approximately 20 seconds.

Eating a healthy breakfast is certainly the right way to start the day! Be sure to set a good example for your kids by eating a good breakfast on your way out the door.

We'd love to hear your breakfast ideas. What's your favorite morning meal?